On the 30th Day of Christmas Lorelei DeMesa gave to me…
He remembered being made. Each roll, each twist and the cut. He enjoyed the warmth of the oven and the breeze of the cooling rack.
Each day at the bakery, he looked out at all the people and desperately wanted to be taken home. Every night, he was disappointed.
He talked to the other cookies and cakes and thought wistfully about his family that had already been devoured.
On the day before Christmas, he finally heard what he had been waiting for all along.
“Mom, can I have this one?” He was finally picked up! Brought to the register! His friends shouted their goodbyes.
“I’ll miss you! Hope you get eaten soon too!”
Into the bag he went. He shifted around, thankful that his cousin was coming too.
He got to their place and heard “He’s too pretty to eat darling, why not put hang him up on the tree?’
NOOOO. This wasn’t supposed to happen. Gingerbread men get eaten, not hung up! He wanted to twist away and go back to the bakery, but he was only a flat cookie.
“But I want to eat him.”
“No, maybe another time. Just put him on the tree for the pictures.”
“Then can I?”
Both looked expectantly at her.
“The other one got a little damaged on the way back, why not that one?”
While he was happy for his cousin, he felt a twinge of envy as she pulled an arm off of him and put it into her mouth. When was his time coming?
Up on the tree he went. Hours passed. He tried shaking a bit to entice the dog, but it wasn’t interested.
Soon, everyone gathered around the tree and they were staring at the clock.
“It’s midnight!” the little girl shouted.
“Well, so it is. Santa filled all of these empty boxes and now you can open them!”
She screamed as she opened each new toy and box. He hoped all that activity was making her hungry.
Toys were handled, played with, discarded. Her lids started to droop and her dad took her upstairs.
Her mother looked at him.
“Well, Mr. Gingerbread Man, you do actually look good.” She held him in her hand, moving him around.
It was his time!
“But, I’ve eaten way too many sweets already.”
Lights were turned off, every creature in the house slept except for him. He was fuming. This was not his destiny! An ornament? Cookies are FOOD and meant to be eaten.
He spent hours despairing. Was he going to end up in the bin? Carted off and left to rot? He wished his frosting had gotten messed up like his cousin’s.
It was still dark out then he heard the patter of little feet. She was back! She took him, pulled at the plastic wrap and bit his head off.
Lorelei started writing for fun this year with a food blog and the VSS365 prompts (https://twitter.com/JannaDemm ). She’s a 40 something native New Yorker who defected, gasp, to Jersey City (although she still works in Manhattan).
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